By Brandi Makuski
The Stevens Point City Times quietly celebrated its first print anniversary on May 5.
It was quiet not because we forgot, and not because we didn’t want a big cake, but because the news never sleeps. And often, neither do we.
For those of you who might not know, the City Times was launched as a weekly news site in 2010. We had no start-up capital, no business plan and no experience. It was a very immature-looking site, to be sure. But enough of you believed in the news service we were offering to keep coming back each week, and due to heavy reader demand we changed to a daily news site in 2012.
A demand for a print issue soon followed, and on May 5, 2014 the first issue of the Stevens Point City Times rolled off the press in Waupaca.
Our small staff hand-delivered copies to every doorstep we were able to on early Sunday mornings. We hired young men to work as “newsboys” and hand out copies in front of local grocery stores.
The print editions were often snatched up by readers, leaving newsstands empty within a matter of hours each Sunday. Our workload doubled, then tripled, and soon we were the go-to source of daily news in the Stevens Point Metro area, covering only Point, Plover, Whiting and Hull.
After six months of print, we were scooped up by Multi Media Channels LLC and joined with the Buyer’s Guide print editions, making a full-fledged newspaper out of what used to be a shopper. In an industry where countless other news entities fold (no pun intended)- and in a market already dominated by a chain media company- we’ve grown to become the largest newspaper in Portage County. Regular readers of our editorials will recognize my repeated musings on this topic, but it is quite humbling- and at times quite terrifying.
Over the past five years our staff has witnessed firsthand the real lack of accountability in some elected and appointed positions. We’ve seen the other side of that coin, too, when some officials in city, school district and county governments hit a brick wall as they publicly deal with coworkers who feel they are above reproach. Our reporters have been on the receiving end of harassment and threats, and we’ve all had to deal with our fair share of bullies. It’s all in a day’s work.
Over the past five years our staff has also been privileged to witness all that is good in the Metro area. We love our hometown and report on all the exciting things happening here every chance we get.
Whether the news is good or bad, each member of our staff is proud to report the very best in local news to our readers.
Our staff has a history of entering uncharted waters. And you can bet it’s a habit we intend on keeping. To coin a term from Bartles and Jaymes, “Thank you for your support”.